The Ireland team to play Italy in the RBS 6 Nations Championship this Saturday has been named. The side shows two changes to the starting line-up from the last outing, with both changes coming in the back-line.
Craig Gilroy, who missed the game against France with a groin strain, returns on the right wing in place of Fergus McFadden who is unavailable due to a rib injury.
Jonathan Sexton also returns to the team to start at out-half after missing the past two matches due to a hamstring injury, with Paddy Jackson moving to the replacements bench in place of Ian Madigan.
There are also further changes among the replacements with Devin Toner coming into the matchday squad in place of Donncha O’Callaghan.
Paul Marshall is the reserve scrum half, one of two players who come make their debuts off the bench – the other being replacement prop Stephen Archer.
IRELAND Team & Replacements (v Italy, 2013 RBS 6 Nations Championship, Stadio Olimpico, Rome, Saturday, March 16, kick-off 3.30pm local time/2.30pm Irish time):
Club/Province/International Caps –
15 – Rob Kearney (UCD/Leinster/45)
14 – Craig Gilroy (Dungannon/Ulster/4)
13 – Brian O’Driscoll (UCD/Leinster/124)
12 – Luke Marshall (Ballymena/Ulster/2)
11 – Keith Earls (Young Munster/Munster/38)
10 – Jonathan Sexton (St. Mary’s College/Leinster/36)
9 – Conor Murray (Garryowen/Munster/18)
1 – Cian Healy (Clontarf/Leinster/38)
2 – Rory Best (Banbridge/Ulster/66)
3 – Mike Ross (Clontarf/Leinster/28)
4 – Mike McCarthy (Buccaneers/Connacht/9)
5 – Donnacha Ryan (Shannon/Munster/27)
6 – Peter O’Mahony (Cork Constitution/Munster/13)
7 – Sean O’Brien (UCD/Leinster/26)
8 – Jamie Heaslip (Dublin University/Leinster/56) (capt)
16 – Sean Cronin (St. Mary’s College/Leinster/25)
17 – David Kilcoyne (UL Bohemians/Munster/6)
18 – Stephen Archer (Cork Constitution/Munster) *
19 – Devin Toner (Lansdowne/Leinster/4)
20 – Iain Henderson (Ballynahinch/Ulster/4)
21 – Paul Marshall (Belfast Harlequins/Ulster) *
22 – Paddy Jackson (Dungannon/Ulster/2)
23 – Luke Fitzgerald (Blackrock College/Leinster/25)
* Denotes uncapped player